Sentenced to two years in prison, including one year to be served under electronic surveillance, by the Marseille Criminal Court, in July 2021, Chadi Younes, a 49-year-old osteopath, saw his sentence reduced to 18 months suspended prison sentence Tuesday by the Aix-en-Provence Court of Appeal.
However, the court maintained its sentence to a fine of 50.000 euros and a ban on acquiring any building for residential use for five years. As in the first instance, the SCI Celiam through which he owned his property was sentenced on appeal to a fine of 100.000 euros.
Mr. Younes was found guilty of several offences: endangering others, refusal to relocate the occupant of unsanitary premises, and finally complicity in willful damage and damage to premises subject to a jeopardized in order to make the occupants leave.
On October 29, 2018, less than a week before the tragedy in rue d'Aubagne, in which eight people had lost their lives in the sudden collapse of two unsanitary buildings in the heart of Marseille, a building he owned had been urgently evacuated. Part of the roof had just collapsed after a beam broke.
Water infiltration, large cracks: occupants had then testified to the unsanitary condition of the building and in particular the common areas. When they returned to the site after the work, the tenants, including a family with children, discovered that their personal belongings had been thrown into the dumpster.
In the judgment consulted by AFP, the court notes that Mr. Younes, owner of around twenty apartments and professional premises, "struggles to question himself and to hear the reprehensible nature of his actions".
For his lawyer, Me Pascal Roubaud, who indicated to AFP his intention to file an appeal in cassation, "this investigation was carried out ultra charge and the magistrates did not have the hindsight to say that it did not was not technically valid". The lawyer thus mentions the absence of expertise on the cause of the rupture of the beam.
The court also reduced from 8.000 euros to 6.000 euros the amount of damages awarded to the four tenants who had instituted civil proceedings. "Isn't this decision a brake on the fight against unfit housing?" Reacted their lawyer, Me Aurélien Leroux.